Thursday, September 6, 2018

Real World Experience with Shady Rays Sunglasses

The Good the Bad and the Ugly Review

First off, I want to state that I am not being paid for this post.  I sometimes put in affiliate links, but there will be none in this post.  I am doing this because I could not find anything written or posted to YouTube about Shady Rays that did not appear to be paid content of some sort.  I figured some of you would like to know what the real-world experience is like with these possibly “too good to be true” glasses you stumbled across on social media.  I call them Instagram Shades.

So, what are they like?

Quality-wise, my experience has been ho hum.  I have seen 3 pairs of Shady Ray Sunglasses, one had a defect I couldn’t get over but later learned to accept when I realized I wasn’t going to do better, one was just plain bad, and the other astoundingly good.  Let me explain.  I clicked through to their site from an Instagram ad that snagged my attention.  I was having a hard time deciding between the X-Series Ocean Ice Polarized and the Signature Series Black Ice Polarized.  After what was really a long time, I decided on the Black Ice Signatures only to be surprised in the checkout with a deal to buy both at a substantial discount, so I did.  A few days later I received two pairs of sunglasses.  Both are very solid.  I am not worried about them just breaking.  The signature series surprised me with just how well built it is.  I was a little concerned about the plastic hinges on the x-series, but once on my face those concerns melted away.  Another thing to consider is that I really have two more pairs for $20.  Shady Rays will replace lost or damaged glasses forever up to two pairs for the cost of shipping.  I haven’t tested it yet, but I believe them.  I’ll get to why in a moment.  As for the appearance, the x-series glasses look amazing, at least with Ocean lenses and clear Ice frames.  They really do look like the pictures and sit true on your face.  The arms are slightly bendy too.  I have no clue how they managed that with clear plastic, but the result is that they don’t put a lot of pressure on your head even under a motorcycle helmet.  I am so thankful for that.  I was worried they’d stab my dreads. They don’t.  I was worried they’d hurt my ears. They don’t. And I was worried they’d squeeze my head.  They don’t.  Amazing!  These are my new favorite pair of shades.

The Good the Bad and the Ugly

The signature series glasses, I was not so happy with.  They’d be great glasses for the price, save for what may have been a defect (but twice?)  The glasses are solid and well made, but one of the arms that was supposed to be clear, is clouded, it looks like maybe with some adhesive.  I tried to clean it off but succeeded only in scrubbing off part of the Shady Rays logo.  I tried to ignore it, but eventually my OCD won out and I had to send it back.  And this is why I believe SR will honor the lifetime Live Hard warranty.  I filled out their exchange form online and they sent me the replacement pair immediately.  I received it as quickly as my initial purchase and get this, I still had my original pair.  The new pair came with a prepaid label to send back the other pair.  I had to pay nothing extra and I still have my two free with shipping replacements.  There’s just one problem.  The new glasses were worse than the ones I was going to send back.  One of the arms was still clouded albeit not as bad, but in addition one of the lenses was loose and there appeared to be a rock embedded above the left lens in the plastic of the frame.  It was deep in there too, you could not feel it on the surface.  

I’m sure I could have sent that pair back and got another new one, but I just decided to hold on to the first pair.  I do have two replacement waiting anyway, besides, wearing cheap clear glasses on the motorcycle is bound to cloudy the arms eventually anyway.  The repeated failure to send actually clear frames kind of soured me on the brand, but the customer service pretty much makes up for it.  Let’s put it this way, when I have managed to break or loose all three pairs of x-series Ocean Ice glasses.  I will buy new ones.  When all three pairs of Signature Black Ice glasses are gone, I will probably not.  So, I guess they kept my business, even if I would have to give them just a 4 out of 5 stars.  Hey, that’s a B, it’s still above average.        


Is Shady Rays a rip-off?  Absolutely not.  Shady Rays is a legitimate business that treats its customers very well and gives to charity.  Their products can be wonderful, but there are some quality control issues.  They will happily replace anything you are unhappy with and will replace lost, broken, or stolen glasses for the cost of shipping. 

You’ve probably read the comments on the Shady Rays site or watched some of their YouTube videos.  Look, these are not Oakleys or Maui Jims or Ray Bans, and if you think they are, you will be disappointed, but they are good glasses for what they cost and will beat most of what you find for less and frankly, sometime more.  And they have the added benefit of the lifetime warranty. 

I hope this has helped somebody.  I found myself becoming irritated at the lack of honest reviews, so now there is at least one.

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